Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

July 21, 2013

Students without citizenship face struggles in Indiana

The fight for an education continues.

Angel Ramos, 20, moved to Indiana with his parents and younger sister from Uruapan, Michoacán, Mexico, when he was 8.

His family moved to the U.S. for typical reasons: to work and build a better life for him and his sister, Ramos said.

He attended U.S. schools beginning in the fourth grade and graduated from Kokomo High School in 2010.

Ramos now works with his father as an independent contractor, mostly making furnishings for houses, such as door frames and cabinets.

Because it’s just the two of them, they don’t make much money, and definitely not enough to send Angel to college since House Bill 1402 passed in 2011.

HB 1402 requires undocumented students like Angel to pay out-of state tuition.

Before the bill, tuition at Indiana University Kokomo was manageable at $198 per credit hour.

“It was just enough money that me and my dad could work together and pay as we went,” Ramos said. “It would be hard, but we would be able to do it. He would work, and I would study and help him out.”

He got as far as attending orientation and signing up for classes to study fine arts at the local college before the bill passed and reality hit him like a smack in the face.

“I started getting really excited … But, one night I came home, turned on the news, and there were these kids my age at the Statehouse, protesting a new bill signed by Gov. Mitch Daniels,” he said. “Later on I found out that that law prevented me from getting in-state tuition.”

Now Angel would have to pay IU Kokomo’s out-of state rate of $563 per credit hour if he wanted to attend school.

“When I went up to my dad and talked to him, he just looked at me and said, ‘We can’t afford that,’” Ramos said.

He was devastated.

He feels just as American as anyone who was born in the U.S., he said, and he doesn’t understand why he should be forced to pay out-of state tuition in a state where he has lived the majority of his life.

“I wasn’t born here, but I was raised here,” he said. “I went to American schools, went on field trips, had American friends, watched American movies, and I stood up every morning at school and said the Pledge of Allegiance.”

For students like Ramos, HB 1402 made college two to three times more expensive and much harder to pay for, especially since such students also are ineligible for state or federal financial aid.

When the bill went into effect July 1, 2011, students had two options: pay out-of state tuition or drop out and wait for Congress to pass immigration reform or apply for Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals work permit policy.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Lake Co. judge strikes down Indiana right-to-work INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A Lake County judge struck down Indiana's right-to-work ban on certain union fees in a second legal blow to the contentious law passed in 2012. Lake County Circuit Court Judge George Paras determined the law violates the state co

    July 24, 2014

  • Peru dam Who should fix the dams? PERU — Who has jurisdiction over six dams located in the Hidden Hills housing addition just north of Peru, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources or the people who own the land?It’s a question with a lot riding on it — more than $1.5 million, in

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Residents organize outreach for fire victims Josh and Courtney Justice lost everything they owned Tuesday afternoon after a fire ravaged their home in Indian Heights. The community has been reaching out to help replace some of what was destroyed. Just hours after the blaze displaced the Justice

    July 23, 2014

  • Howard County rejected for state preschool pilot Howard County is not among the five counties selected for Indiana’s new preschool voucher pilot.Gov. Mike Pence announced Tuesday that Allen, Jackson, Lake, Marion and Vanderburgh counties will roll out the program in 2015. Eighteen counties, includi

    July 24, 2014

  • Kokomo man charged with sexual misconduct with a minor Kokomo police arrested a 20-year-old man Tuesday afternoon on a warrant charging him with sexual misconduct with a minor involving a 14-year-old girl.Officers arrested Malachi Ely at 4:38 p.m. at his residence in the 500 block of South Goyer Road on

    July 24, 2014

  • Kokomo Airport runway extension nearing completion After more than a decade of waiting, a runway extension project that will allow the Kokomo Municipal Airport to attract new business will soon be prepared for takeoff.The project, which will extend the airport’s main runway from 5,200 feet to 6,000 f

    July 24, 2014

  • NWS KT 072314 Serena Youth Center pic Serena Youth Center to offer safe haven for young women

    Young women in Kokomo in need of security and additional support will soon have a new place to call home as plans move forward to open the Serena Youth Center. On Tuesday, Coordinated Assistance Ministries Inc. closed on a property for the youth cent

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man jailed on sex charge Kokomo police arrested a 20-year-old man Tuesday afternoon on a warrant charging him with sexual misconduct with a minor involving a 14-year-old. Officers arrested Malachi Ely at 4:38 p.m. at his residence in the 500 block of South Goyer Road on the

    July 23, 2014

  • Indiana Veterans Hall of Fame seeks nominations INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A new hall of fame for Indiana military veterans is seeking nominations for its first class of inductees. The Indiana Military Veterans Hall of Fame says it expects to induct the first honorees around Veterans Day at Fort Benjamin

    July 23, 2014

  • Lawmakers approve pair of new license plates INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A panel of state lawmakers approved new license plates recognizing the Indy 500 and Abraham Lincoln under a new system clamping down on the number of special license plates on the road. Members of the Legislature's transportation

    July 23, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Gen. Odierno Discusses Ukraine, NATO at Forum Gaza Fighting Rages Amid Cease-Fire Efforts Mint Gives JFK Coin a Face-lift Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries